Scene of La Mesa officer-involved shooting at Amaya Drive and Fletcher Parkway. Photo via OnScene TV

A man who allegedly had two machetes as he chased a 13-year-old girl through La Mesa, prompting an officer to shoot him when he allegedly charged the officer with one of the weapons, was charged Thursday with two counts each of assault with a deadly weapon and resisting an executive officer.

Arraignment for Bernard E. Graham, 34, was postponed until Tuesday at Sharp Memorial Hospital.

Graham was shot in the abdomen and one of his arms during the Monday morning encounter with La Mesa police on Fletcher Parkway, a short distance from Amaya Drive, according to La Mesa Police Capt. Ray Sweeney.

The events that led to the shooting began just before 8:30 a.m., when a man in a black leather jacket confronted a 13-year-old near a trolley station as she was walking to school and threw a closed pocket knife at her, striking her with it, police said.

The terrified girl ran off, and Graham gave chase according to police. The teen managed to elude her pursuer by fleeing into a nearby sandwich shop, Sweeney said.

Graham ignored officers’ commands to drop a large machete-style knife and allegedly charged toward one of them, prompting the officer to open fire.

The defendant — who has a 2004 conviction for arson — remained held at the hospital on $350,000 bail. He faces 55 years to life if convicted of the current charges.

— City News Service

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